Welfare recipients have allegedly been gambling on another person’s dollar in Florida by utilizing EBT cards at underground gaming facilities.
Welfare recipients in Tallahassee, Florida, have purportedly been utilizing their benefit that is electronic transferEBT) cards to buy, among other things, alcohol and tobacco, and in addition used the funds to gamble.
A multi-agency investigation led by the Leon County Sheriff’s Office in Tallahassee has identified 132 suspects taking part in a gambling that is illegal fraud scheme. Four local residents in Leon County happen arrested on charges of racketeering, money laundering, welfare card fraudulence, and unlawful gambling.
Leon County Sheriff Mike Wood claims the operation netted the ringleaders a huge selection of thousands of dollars in ill-gotten gains.
Wondwossen Gizaw-Tessema, 57, Eyerusalem Hiluf, 31, Firehiwot Gebre, 35, and Christabel Ekhosuehi, 29, were apprehended by Leon County, with all the first three accused of being the ringleaders of the enterprise that is multi-venue.
According up to a news release, the Wondu Marathon Convenience Store, Euro Fashions Boutique, One Stop university Market, Pretty Game Boutique, and Belen Mart businesses were all used as gambling enterprises and EBT exchange centers.
Down with EBT
Law enforcement believes Gizaw-Tessema had been the boss associated with procedure, as he owns many of the businesses involved in the ring. Leon County described the gambling that is illegal to be just like slots, for the reason that players simply deposited cash, hit a button, and won or lost.
A total of 24 machines were apprehended from the Sheriff’s Office raids that took place in after obtaining search warrants july.
Issued by the Florida Department of Children and Families, EBT cards cannot be utilized to purchase alcoholic beverages, nor can the funds be spent in bars, liquor stores, adult activity venues, or pari-mutuel or gambling facilities.
Gizaw-Tessema created a solution that is nifty the EBT regulations by offering cash as a swap for typical essential household supplies. He allegedly offered Costco and Sam’s Club shopping lists to EBT cardholders, and when the welfare recipients returned with all the items, they were paid by him 50 cents on the dollar for the items.
With cash in hand, many ‘customers’ are suspected of trying to recoup their losses on Gizaw-Tessema’s gaming devices.
Detectives estimate the EBT operation pulled in upwards of $1,000 a day. January Financial records show Gizaw-Tessema deposited a total of $1.4 million to four bank accounts dating back to.
The story out of Tallahassee is certainly not the first-time EBT monies have been used to gamble.
A 2010 review in California revealed that $1.8 million in welfare funds were spent at gambling enterprises. Plus in Seattle, a neighborhood news station investigation in 2013 found that $2 million of EBT money had been gambled with at free online slots dolphin treasure Washington casinos.
Congress encouraged states in 2012 issuing welfare money to ‘maintain policies and practices’ that prevent wasteful spending by recipients in ‘any liquor store, any casino, gambling casino, or gaming establishment.’ However, the federal legislation doesn’t clearly mandate that states follow the rules.
Many state lawmakers have obliged.
Only two states, Minnesota and Texas, do not have any regulations preventing EBT money from used for gambling. Minnesota does ban EBT cards from tobacco and alcohol purchases, while Texas does not have any regulations on what an individual’s welfare money is spent.
US Start Match-Fixing Scandal Once Again Plagues Tennis
The US Open match-fixing scandal in ny has once put the sport again front and center into the media, with critics calling the activity’s integrity into question.
Irregular patterns that are betting Vitalia Diatchenko (in yellow) and Timea Bacsinszky’s first-round US Open match have came back tennis match-fixing to the headlines. (Image: Alex Goodlett/Getty Pictures)
On August 30, 15th-ranked Timea Bacsinszky of Switzerland beat Russia’s Vitalia Diatchenko in straight sets. But after a 6-1, 6-1 match, tennis’ governing human body was asked to probe the contest.
The Tennis Integrity Unit (TIU), formed in 2008 by the leading tennis organizations round the world, is investigating whether incorrect agreements had been made prior to Bacsinszky and Diatchenko’s match.
Russian online bookmaker Fonbet had been apparently the first to ever inform tennis over suspicious patterns that are betting. Bet365 filed grievances that are similar said it was forced to suspend betting on the match.
‘ As with all cases, the TIU will assess, create a judgment and take action that is appropriate the alert information received and obtained for the first round singles match between Vitalia Diatchenko and Timea Bacsinszky played at the US Open,’ the TIU said in a statement. ‘ Every alert received is assessed and followed up as an indicator that something inappropriate may have happened. It’s crucial to understand that an alert on its own is not proof of match-fixing.’
Integrity Unit Win
Corruption has unfortunately beleaguered the sport of tennis for decades, however the 2016 US open match-fixing scandal could have long-term good impact. That’s because the match in concern appears to get against all conventional match-fixing wisdom.
Instead of an unranked or lower-seeded opponent pulling off an upset at insurmountable chances, Bacsinszky, the 16th-ranked player in the world, did exactly what she had been supposed to do. Bacsinszky won is right sets, but regardless, the betting houses detected irregularities.
Bacsinszky won a silver medal in doubles at the 2016 Olympics in Rio, while Diatchenko is rated 677th worldwide.
Bacsinszky ended up being a -425 favorite at Bovada, meaning one would need to bet $425 to win $100. But in tennis, since is the instance with specific other sports, in-play wagering is continuing to grow in popularity overseas.
Numerous side bets are offered on tennis including set scores, total matches in a game, first to win a collection, total sets, and more.
Numerous believe tennis match-fixing corruption mainly occurs during lower-level matches where not as numerous eyes are watching. However, fewer bets may also be typically placed on non-marquee games, making it that more difficult to conceal fraudulent task.
Sports Betting Adore
The TIU has had a busy 2016. In the quarter that is first, the agency was notified 48 times over dubious gambling patterns.
The most notable tennis name to be engulfed in sports gambling is current number one Novak Djokovic. In 2007, the 12-time Grand Slam winner said he was approached with a bookie and offered $200,000 to lose a match that is first-round.
During the Australian Open, betting was suspended on a blended doubles match, however the TIU later said it found no evidence of match-fixing.
A 2007 game between Martin Arguello and Nikolay Davydenko brought tennis match-fixing to the limelight. Arguello, ranked 87th worldwide at the time, won the match whenever fourth-ranked Davydenko withdrew citing an injury.
Alleged Mob Kingpin Joey Merlino Banned from All Pennsylvania Gambling Enterprises
Ba-da-bing! Joey ‘Skinny Joey’ Merlino banned from Pennsylvania’s 12 casino hotspots. (Image: Miami Herald)
Joey Merlino, the person who the FBI believes become the head of the Philadelphia Mob, happens to be prohibited from entering the state’s 12 casinos. The Pennsylvania Gaming Control Board (PGCB) voted unanimously this to designate ‘Skinny Joey’ persona non grata, after an altercation at the Sugarhouse Casino in March week.
That, and the fact he was arrested in very early August along with 46 mob that is alleged, soldiers and capos, and accused to be one of the ringleaders of a criminal kingdom known as the East Coast La Cosa Nostra Enterprise.
Skinny Joey and his associates were charged, variously, with illegal gambling, extortion, gun-running, fraud, good racketeering that is old-fashioned as well as other crimes. He could be currently out on $5 million bail as he awaits trial.
The PGCB stated that it began its investigation following an incident during the Sugarhouse blackjack tables when Merlino and his entourage dropped as a disagreement with other players.
In accordance with documents seen by Fox News, things got heated and several punches were thrown before security broke up the battle. Merlino apparently then shook hands with one of the opposing group and left.
He was met by PGCB agents who attempted to serve him with an exclusion order, but he brushed them off and walked out when he returned to the same casino the following month.
Agents again attempted to serve him your order when he appeared at Harrahs Casino in Chester, and were again waved away by the reputed gangster.
‘We tried to serve him at his restaurant, his house, at Harrah’s, at SugarHouse,’ said board spokesman Doug Harbach. ‘It’s a permanent ban he ought to be taken out of the list. unless he petitions the board to be removed and offers the board with ample reason why’
The arrests last month came as the result of a joint investigation between the FBI and New York’s arranged crime task force and is thought to own spanned several years and involved infiltration by the undercover FBI agent into the ranks associated with company.
Investigators say they have collected tens of thousands of hours of testimonies gathered through wiretaps and the cooperation of a witness. The 32-page indictment unsealed last month details incidents of assaults, threats and arson.
Merlino has beaten murder charges into the past, but has served prison time for racketeering. He had been barred from all Atlantic City casinos.
Quebec Regulator Accuses Ex-Amaya Chief David Baazov of Taking Kickbacks
It is been a year that is rough David Baazov. The former boy that is golden primary executive officer of Canada’s Amaya Inc., had been charged by Quebec’s monetary regulatory arm, the AMF, of insider trading. Although he has denied all of the charges vehemently, he first took a temporary leave, after which finally stepped down, from his administrator duties at the gaming company.
David Baazov denies the fees that he profited from an enhanced insider trading scheme by receiving 10 % kickbacks for dripping privileged information. (Image: YouTube.com)
But now, a bombshell that is new been lobbied at the ex-leader: that of taking kickbacks in return for information, as reported by the AMF. Based on court documents filed by the regulator, Baazov was the head of an insider trading ‘pyramid’ and took kickbacks for dripping privileged information to a ‘sophisticated community.’
The network, the AMF contends, contained his brother, some continuing company acquaintances, as well as other family and friends members.
Baazov engineered one probably the most takeovers that are audacious gambling history, the $4.9 billion purchase of PokerStars by Amaya. But he formally resigned month that is last CEO and chairman of the company he transformed into one of the greatest online gambling players on earth.
Now he faces new allegations, presented this week in documents, which would be the outcome of a continued investigation by the AMF throughout the spring and summer. The regulator alleges that Baazov was the primary supply of leaked information that was disseminated through his sibling, Josh Baazov, and their associate, Craig Levett, A amaya that is former consultant.
Ten Percent Kickbacks
It also alleges why these three took kickbacks for their services, typically amounting to 10 percent of all of the profits gained, and that included ‘luxury items’ presented as gifts, including a Rolex watch well worth $13,000. The AMF alleges that the terms had been ‘negotiated before the offenses,’ and that the combined group revealed a ‘high amount of organization and elegance’ in its operations.
The regulator says the group, consisting of 13 people, made around $1.5 million in profit from trading stocks just before at least six takeover deals, going back to Amaya’s acquisition of Cryptologic this season.
Amaya has had a committed m&a strategy in the last six years, acquiring Chartwell, Ongame, Cadillac Jack, and Diamond Game Enterprises, in addition to Cryptologic as well as the Oldford Group, which owned PokerStars. Two purchases under scrutiny had been unrelated to Amaya: Scientific Games’ purchase of WMS and Intertain’s acquisition Gamesys’ major assets.
Based on the AMF, members associated with the group were still attempting to profit from Baazov’s bid to acquire Amaya and take it personal, a move which was announced in January in 2010, long following the AMF investigation had been launched.
‘Mr. Baazov has been categorical: he failed to receive such a thing,’ their spokesman Ian Robertson told the Financial Post via email. ‘As Mr. Baazov has previously stated, he is innocent of any wrongdoing and desperate to present his defense,’ Robertson added.
On Wednesday, Baazov’s lawyer previously filed a notice contesting the allegations that are new. While retired CEO has resigned forever from his executive positions in the ongoing business, he continues to be its majority shareholder.